[PYTHON MATRIX-SIG] Plotting packages
Fri, 7 Mar 1997 15:42:56 -0800 (PST)
On Fri, 7 Mar 1997, Jim Hugunin wrote:
> Am I missing any packages? Am I wrong in my comments about any of these?
> It sounds to me like the Astronomers among us are only interested in
> PGPlot. Is this for historical reasons, or are there some features in this
> package that are not supported by the others?
Well, I don't actually use it myself, but it's always on the list of
packages mentioned when discussing plots. I get the feeling that most
people use SuperMongo or IDL, which are both proprietary.
Personally, I just use gnuplot and Mathematica for most of my plots. I
wrote a brief Python interface to gnuplot, which works in the simplest way
imaginable: it writes out temporary files of data and plotting commands,
then calls gnuplot on them. That idea would work for any of the standard
interactive plotting packages, but is rather slow.
> I have no intention (or really ability) to legislate a single plotting
> package for NumPy. Nonetheless, I'd be happiest if there could be a
> consensus on a good system for general use. I'd even be willing to write
> the interface code to such a system to help get things off on the right
Speaking of consensus, would it be possible to define a standard set of
basic NumPy plot classes and methods, which would then be implemented
through any of a number of plot packages? I am thinking of something like
the os module; each OS has its own implementation of rm, ls, etc., but the
os module provides a universal interface, allowing easy portability.
There could be a basic plot interface which allows plotting of 1D arrays,
setting titles, setting axis labels, setting ranges, log scaling, etc., in
a standard way. All these plotting packages do basically the same thing,
so shouldn't it be possible to define one interface to them all, with a
few special commands to provide access to package-specific features? Or
is this more trouble than it's worth?
Johann Hibschman | Grad student in Physics, lurking in Astronomy,
firstname.lastname@example.org | Probing Pulsar Pair Plasma Production Processes
MATRIX-SIG - SIG on Matrix Math for Python
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